Tybee MLK receives anonymous donation

Tybee MLK receives anonymous donation

TYBEE ISLAND, Ga. (WTOC) - Two months ago Tybee Island City Council passed a resolution to acknowledge the city’s African American history and promote racial equality.

A local civil rights organization also worked to make it happen.

After working with the city to develop and pass a race equity resolution in July, Tybee MLK says they’ve received an anonymous $4,000 donation to continue their work.

“She asked that we take that money and use it for good trouble. Good trouble, what Congressman John Lewis talked about all of his life. And what we’re trying to do is represent good trouble," said Tybee MLK Coordinator Julia Pearce.

However, Pearce says they can’t cause good trouble on their own.

“What we’re talking about is telling the story. The historic story of Tybee as it relates to African-American people. And it has needed to be told for quite some time.”

When it came to passing the resolution, it took more than just Tybee MLK to get the story told.

In June, police approached local historian, Dr. Jamal Toure, while he was doing research for the resolution.

Someone called police and accused him of using profanity. Toure said he did not and was troubled by the experience.

Pearce says Toure and this incident were an instrumental part in the resolution passing.

Councilwoman Nancy DeVetter wrote the original resolution.

She believes this donation to Tybee MLK shows people care about change.

“I think people identified that Tybee taking a stand on this and that it actually wants to take real action and they want to celebrate that and they want to encourage that effort to push that effort and to support it," said Councilwoman Nancy DeVetter.

Councilwoman DeVetter says the resolution is already at work in the city.

“We are taking affirmative steps to develop historic displays for both the historic Wade In which was the effort to desegregate Tybee’s beaches and Lazaretto Creek where enslaved were brought to be quarantined before they were sold into slavery. And we hope to identify other areas that might give encouragement and support to other marginalized groups that have been a part of Tybee’s history," said Councilwoman DeVetteer.

Councilwoman DeVetter says city employees are going through implicit bias training. She also says the police department is reviewing their arrest and sentencing data.

These are two things the resolution called for.

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